Volleyball To Face UNLV To Start Three-Game Homestand

Oct. 31, 2000

San Diego State (15-11 overall, 7-4 MWC) begins its final three-game homestand of the season when it hosts UNLV (4-16 overall, 4-7 MWC) on Saturday, Nov. 4, at 7:00 p.m. in Peterson Gym. The contest will be the Aztecs' only action of the week.

A win over the Rebels would extend SDSU's current win streak to four matches, tying its longest streak of the season, which it has reached twice previously.

SDSU wraps up the home portion of its 2000 schedule with matches against seventh-ranked Colorado State and Wyoming during the weekend of Nov. 13-14.

San Diego State has won seven of the previous eight meetings with the Rebels, including the match between the two teams in Las Vegas in early October. UNLV's lone win in the series came in September 1998 at Las Vegas. The first two meetings between the Aztecs and Rebels came in 1985 when both were members of the Pacific Coast Athletic Association (now Big West) for volleyball.

The Aztecs swept a pair of MWC road matches last weekend, defeating Air Force in three games on Friday and downing New Mexico, 3-1, on Saturday.

Against Air Force, San Diego State was led by Nicole Akporiaye's 13 kills as the Aztecs won by game scores of 15-3, 15-9, 15-9. Akporiaye was the only SDSU player in double figures in kills. Katie Magnuson contributed 14 digs while Erin Grady had five block assists.

At New Mexico, five Aztecs hit double figures in kills, led by Akporiaye's 14. Others included Monet Solberg (13), Amy Hallquist (13), Erin Grady (12) and Aspen McPartland (12). Hallquist had 15 digs to complete her fifth double double of the season as SDSU won by game scores of 15-8, 15-4, 15-17, 15-9.

San Diego State ranks third in the conference with a team hitting percentage of .221 and an average of 2.79 blocks/game.

Senior Erin Grady ranks first in the Mountain West Conference stats in blocks with an average of 1.76 bpg in all games and 1.77 bpg in league games only. She began last week ranked second in that category.

Hitter Nicole Akporiaye is seventh in the MWC with an overall hitting percentage of .300 and a league-game mark of .302.

Setter Melissa Wright is third in assists average at 11.84 apg (12.31 apg in conference matches).

Jessica Allen ranks fourth in service aces in all games with a 0.36 assist/game average. In MWC contests, freshman Aspen McPartland is fourth at 0.38 sa/g.

After 26 matches, here's a look at the San Diego State stat leaders thus far:

           Overall          Conference

Sophomore outside hitter Nicole Akporiaye totaled 27 kills in SDSU's two matches last weekend and had a hitting percentage of .345 for the two contests. She showed excellent consistency last weekend, hitting .346 at Air Force and .345 at New Mexico.

With 1066 assists, soph Melissa Wright has moved into the number-nine spot on the SDSU career list in her first season as an Aztec. The number-eight position is held by Michelle Pistone, who totaled 1,589 assists during her four-year SDSU career (1993-96). However, Wright, a transfer from Washington State, still needs 12 assists to break into the single-season top 10, with the 10th spot currently occupied by Andrea Clark, who had 1,078 assists during the 1995 season.

Senior Erin Grady's total of 135 block assists this season ranks fifth on the San Diego State single-season list. The school record is 165 in a season set by Kris Morton during the 1985 campaign. The Aztecs have a minimum of five matches left this season (pending their success at the conference tournament), and Grady would need to average six blocks a match in those five contests to tie Morton's mark.

Grady hit .357 over SDSU's matches at Air Force and New Mexico. She totaled 15 kills with only five hitting errors in those two contests.

Amy Hallquist averaged 3.00 kills a game in last weekend's two road matches. She also led the team in digs with a total of 22 in those contests for an average of 3.14 per game.

San Diego State has won nine of its last 11 matches to improve to 15-11 on the season. SDSU won only 11 games overall last season and a total of 16 over the past two years. With three MWC matches left, San Diego State has surpassed its conference win total (6) of the past two seasons.

With a win over UNLV this week and a New Mexico loss either at Wyoming or Colorado State, San Diego State will assure itself of at least the number-four seed at the Mountain West Conference tournament to be held at Colorado State Nov. 16-18. An Aztec win and Lobo loss would mean that San Diego State would finish at worst by itself in fourth place in the final MWC standings, its best final conference standing since the 1997 campaign.

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